Tuesday, December 20, 2011

nail polish remover recommendations?!

As a broke college student, I definitely consider myself a bargain shopper. However, a good bargain shouldn't come at the expense of good quality!

For the past several years, I've relied on Rite Aid Nail Polish Remover. (OK, maybe I've gone a little TOO cheap.) That being said, I so need a new polish remover that is....

a) cheap ($5 or less)
b) effective (I'm definitely impatient, so I have little tolerance for removers that take forever to work!)
c) gentle/nourishing (I polish my nails A LOT, so I need something that won't dry my nails out and/or repair them

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Sally Hansen Salon Effects in "Wild Child"


Here's the result of my first experiment with the "Salon Effects" nail polish strips by Sally Hansen. While I do love DIY nail art, the truth is that I'm an impatient kind of girl. So these no-dry strips seemed like a dream come true! My mom bought these for us to try awhile back. When I opened it, I discovered one of the little packets containing the strips had already been opened. Thinking my mom had just opened it to check out the pattern, I brushed this off. Unfortunately, upon reading the instructions, I quickly realized that once the packet has been opened, the strips lose their stickiness. Being the frugal Asian-American that I am, I refused to throw out an entire handful of otherwise perfectly good nail polish strips. My solution? Using a basecoat, then immediately sticking the strips down while the polish is still...damp? The final effect didn't turn out as clean as I thought it would, but hey, it was my first time! I guess I don't mind that they didn't turn out TOO perfect...I ended up going wakeboarding with my boyfriend and his family the next day, which scuffed up my nails anyhow. ;p
All in all, I think I would give these strips another shot. The designs are too cool to pass up!   

birthday swag from Sephora!


*excuse the non-rotation, even when I rotate my photos right-side up when I import them, they don't stay that way.


One of the many benefits of being a Beauty Insider at Sephora is that they give you a free gift on your birthday: this year's gift is a body wash from the Philosophy line. It smells like vanilla cupcakes! Happy birthday indeed. <3

Thursday, July 28, 2011

eye candy and food for thought.

Saw this video on a friend's Tumblr: I'm hooked! This is "Ugly" by K-pop group 2NE1. I'm pretty sure this could be an anthem for many girls out there, even if you don't understand Korean. (I don't either- but the chorus is in English.) ;p 

Chorus: (courtesy of lyricsmode.com)
"I think I'm ugly
And nobody wants to love me
Just like her I wanna be pretty
I wanna be pretty
Don't lie to my face
Cause I know I'm ugly"


It's an interesting thing when women as gorgeous as the ladies of 2NE1 look at themselves in the mirror and don't like what they see. (Actually, who's to say whether they do or don't- pop songs don't always reflect the singers' actual lives!) From one perspective, it makes them seem more down-to-earth; it makes ordinary girls feel as though these superstars can relate to us. That at the end of the day, despite all the glitz and the glam, they have insecurities, just like the rest of us. But on the other hand, it's downright crazy- if our idols don't feel THEY live up to standards of "beautiful," then who can?!  

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

I'm not dead

My camera and computer are currently at odds, so I've been unable to upload any pictures. Boo!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

product review: evolution of smooth (eos) shave cream


"pretty remarkable." Living in Davis is rough on skin- just ask my legs. Since moving here last September, I've noticed that my skin's become more dry and sensitive than it ever was at home in the Bay Area. I've always used Skintimate because it was cheap and smelled good- not because I thought it produced particularly great results ( soft, smooth legs that didn't itch!) I'd heard of EOS before- a friend of mine used the lip balm and I thought the egg-shaped container it came in was cute- but had never gotten around to trying it.
I bought a bottle last week- and I'm not going back!

When I picked a bottle of the pomegranate raspberry off the shelf, the first thing I did was remove the cap to see if it passed the scent test. (So I'm a little strange...but scent is definitely important to me!) It smelled just as good as any Skintimate product. More benefits: the shaving cream came in a bottle that could a) be recycled and b) wouldn't leave rust rings around my tub. I also read on the label that the company doesn't test on animals, nor does it contain any animal by-products. SOLD.

According to the product description (both on the bottle and the eos website) "this non-foaming cream boosts skin's moisture content and keeps it smooth long after you're done shaving. It's so moisturizing, you can shave wet or dry. And eos provides a closer shave, even helping to prevent those little razor bumps."

I haven't yet tried a dry shave (Oh my gahhhh- sounds like a recipe for disaster! At least on my sensitive skin) but as far as I'm concerned, these claims have been met. Finally, a product that does what it says it will!

EOS shave cream is a tiny bit pricier than Skintimate, but in my opinion, it's worth every penny!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

nyan cat nails!


Ever since my JASS big sib showed me this picture, I've been wanting to try this out! (Still need pink, gray and yellow polish first, though....) She ended up doing her own variation of the look on her toenails, and although I hate feet, I must admit that it looked pretty cool!

Until then, nyaaaaaan!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

$6 facial at SFIEC!

What better exchange than to help out a friend and be pampered at the same time? On Friday I went to the San Francisco Institute of Esthetics and Cosmetology for a facial. When I was in high school, I wanted to attend SFIEC and become a licensed esthetician. But as "Americanized" as my parents seem, my dad wanted me to do something more "ambitious" with my life than attend beauty school. (I know for sure he wouldn't have paid the tuition) So my dream of attending the school never became reality. However, I found the next best thing!

One of my friends from high school recently started taking classes at SFIEC. She and her classmates were responsible for booking their own clients and performing various hair and skin services for them last Friday. I booked a facial and looked forward to seeing an old friend.

The first and only time prior to this where I got a facial was at a dermatologist's office several years ago. Making awkward small talk and getting extractions made it a less-than-relaxing experience. Not so this time- I was at the hands of (ha ha...) someone I've known for years and was therefore comfortable with.

After lying down in what reminded me of a hospital room, my treatment began with a pre-cleanse. An instructor came over to ask my friend what products she was going to use on me. She seemed knowledgeable about her craft, professional without seeming arrogant, and seemed nice without being fake. (Signs of a good instructor!)

I wish I could remember the rest of the products used during the facial. I know for sure they use Dermalogica products, but I'm not so sure of the names. Unfortunately, as a broke college student, I knew I couldn't afford to buy the kit my friend showed me. ($40. Which I blew the next day at a ramen shop and a wine bar. (Fail...)  My favorite step was when she applied a mask that smelled like oatmeal. Getting a light neck massage wasn't bad either!

Under the skin care services menu, facials are advertised at $45. I went in fully expecting to pay full price- so I was definitely surprised when my total came out to $6. I could have splurged and gotten my eyebrows done!

Can't wait for my friend to graduate and become certified- I know for a fact I'll be going back to visit her in the future. Millie, you're the best! <3

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Self-Intro

This is a blog about beauty, so I suppose it only makes sense that I write about something beauty related.
Here goes!

For as long as I can remember, I've loved makeup and other beauty products. Like many little girls, I used to love going through my mom's lipsticks and trying them on when she wasn't home. Two of my favorite toys were a light-up Hello Kitty mirror/jewelry box (very 90's....) and my first makeup palette.

But as an Asian girl, I quickly came to realize that the colors of my child-sized makeup palette were not one-size fits all. The colors, which were most likely intended to be worn by fair-skinned white girls with blue or green eyes, only looked muddy or garish against my yellow-toned skin. Then came the issue of the crease (or in my case, a lack of) - many makeup books and how-to instructionals in magazines were geared towards white, black and sometimes Latina women.

Thus, I'm inspired by the Asian ladies out there who show us how to rock bold, dramatic shadows in ways that are complimentary to our eye shape. (Jinahchae is by far my all-time favorite! And mytigerlily is my go-to girl for bright color eye candy) I still sometimes struggle with making shadows work on my sans crease-less eyes without making it look like I got punched in the face- but it's a skill I'm definitely willing to work on.

I'm inspired by anything dramatic. Not so much the avant-garde looks that make up the MAC homepage (although I do like those too) but anything with rock/retro edge. I loooove girls who can work the rockabilly/pinup look. Red lips, perfect cat-eye swoops.....HAWWTTT!

Although I rarely wear them myself, I love super-bright shades. I've been fascinated by Amy Doan's (aka Shrinkle) look since middle school- I'm pretty sure she's mentioned that she's inspired by drag queens and Japanese street fashion. I was too excited when she came out with her makeup line last year. I'm proud to say that two Sugarpill shadows were my first-ever online purchase!

Unfortunately I am almost always on the verge of being BROKE. As a result, I have a humble makeup collection. Most of what I have either came from free samples or places such as Rite Aide, Target and Wal-Mart. While I love browsing Sephora, I actually only buy products twice a year- after Christmas and after my birthday. The joys of being a college student...

I'm pretty sure I could go on for days, but no one, myself included, likes to read posts that ramble on...and on. I'm excited to see if I can keep up with this! Peace.